Portraits not only capture the personality of the sitter, but also the character of the era in which they were made. Denver-based artist Lui Ferreyra utilizes color, shape, and line to create striking modern portraits that reflect “today's labyrinthine digital age.”
His impressive portfolio features a mix of traditional pieces made with colored pencils, as well as some that are drawn digitally. Regardless of the medium, however, Ferreyra uses the same distinct style to render his subjects. This requires him to fill in faces with bold blocks of color and add numerous hatch marks in varying directions. As a result of this layered effect, the subjects look as though they are seen through a filter.
“I feel like my work explicitly evokes digitalism,” Ferreyra tells My Modern Met. “In that regard, I think I’m deeply influenced by the digital age. That hard-edged breakdown of visual information is very akin to video game graphics, vector renderings, medical CAT scans, satellite imaging, etc. In a way, I think of my work as a revivification of the Impressionist movement, but with a 21st-century technological slant.”
The technicolor palette he employs in the drawings enhances the digital aesthetic. Additionally, the expressive linework creates numerous visual pathways for the viewer's eyes to follow. “What I’m truly obsessed with is the interplay between the deconstruction of visual experience and its re-presentation,” Ferreyra adds.